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Saturn S-Series



  • Earlier I posted a message about acceleration problems with my 96 Saturn. It bucked whenever I accelerated and sometimes died when at stop signs if I didn't rev it up. I changed the Spark plugs and the PVC(?). It's the vacuum advance. I love driving my Saturn again. My spirituality has returned and I am no longer cussing out my car everytime I drive it (-:
  • ernit526ernit526 Posts: 1
    I have a 93SC1 SOHC automatic. I need help. I have already replaced the following, EGR valve, o2 sensor Purge solenoid, converter, and last a new computer. Nothing helped my problem. The car will idle fine, but as soon as you pull out it acts like it is running on 2 cylinders. Mechanic checked fuel pressure,vacum and electrical, but nothing shows up. Even after replacing the solenoid, it showed no codes. Saturn sugessted putting a new computer in and that did not help either. $1100 later I have a car that won't run. Can someone give me some help?
  • tdpaul7tdpaul7 Posts: 5
    MAP sensor... this sounds very similar to a problem I had and the MAP sensor was the fix.
  • jp1954jp1954 Posts: 1
    I've got the same problem- I noticed my passenger side sunroof drain is clogged. I poured water in the tray with the sunroof open, it flowed out the driver side fender well, but not the pass. I'm not sure this is the whole problem, but I'm starting there. Sunroof seals are never perfect, that's why they have provisions for catching the water and draining it.
  • saturn93saturn93 Posts: 2
    I have both Saturn and Mazda, and the Saturn is the best. It is a 1993 and the Mazda is a 2002. The Mazda sits while I drive the old reliable saturn.
  • saturn93saturn93 Posts: 2
    My 93 saturn sc1 has a problem. The power windowns do not work and the radio only plays when it wants. My dealer thinks there is a short in the electrical somewhere. I bought the car used and the service center I took it to knows the car. But does not want to fix it again. Can some help tell me about shorts?
  • hi my 1993 saturn sl2 automatic has some problems it would want to die and bog out when i come to a stop it shifts hard in and out of 2nd and 3rd is the same way and the engine light came on and i did a diagnostic on it and codes #11 pcm/tc trouble codes stored,#73 info flag coolant temp unstable , #74 info flag coolant temp transaxle temp ,#53 info flag esc exceeded max was recommend to me to change the ecm and the wanting to die part is fixed and they changed to silinoid for the temp , it still has problems with the shifting 2,3 so i called someone else and they told me to take it to saturn for them to flash the computer to my car i was wondering if that will fix my problems since i dont have $105.oo dollars to mess around with so if any one could help me that would be great thanks :confuse:
  • button256button256 Posts: 1
    Hi! I've seen some folks on here giving Saturn a really bad rap, but my experience has been good. I have a 1992 SL2, bought used, and it has somewhere over 250,000 miles on it. I bought it a year and a half ago. The odometer quit working at a little over 217,000 miles, but I use this car to deliver pizzas in at the present. I have also used it to deliver newspapers. Have had well over 500 Sunday papers (2" thick) in it at one time. It has survived runins with two larger cars (jealous of my Saturn's durability no doubt :) ). One of those was a Dodge Intrepid that was hauled away. I just had to patch my headlight case and have a few cracks in the front fenders as a result of the incident. The other was a side impact on the right front fender by a Lincoln Continental in a parking lot. (These were NOT my fault by the way.) The damage was not enough to cause drivability issues, so I have not done much to replace them, yet. And the previous owner was MUCH rougher on the car than I have been!!! BUT, it's still going!!! (Knock on wood!!!) I have had a few little problems here and there, but nothing that could not be remedied for less than $25!!!
    I had NEVER been a General Motors fan, but this Saturn has been something else!! Thanks!
    (By the way, the last time I checked, I'm still getting a little over 36 mpg on the highway!!!)
  • blzndavblzndav Posts: 2
    i have a 97 4 cycl sl saturn....was wondering where the crankshaft sensor was located
  • steve1654steve1654 Posts: 1
    I have a 95 saturn SL1 that started leaking fluid by the filter gasket. The transmission is also hard to refill. It appears to be a venting problem. Does any one have a fix?
  • jaimiesjaimies Posts: 1
    I have a 1998 Saturn SC-1 with Manual transmission. I have had a huge number of issues and am not sure what the problem is. I will try to be as detailed as possible (so this may be long):

    In the last two years, I have replaced the battery, the starter, and had my power steering fixed. My car idles heavy and shudders. For the last few months, I have had starting problems; it is much worse when it is a cold start. I turn the key and the engine will turn over several times and then start. Sometimes I have to let it turn over a few times, then turn the key back, wait a second, and turn it again. The stalling problems have started around the same time (maybe a little earlier). My RPMs dance up and down with no pattern. Sometimes while in neutral, the RPMs will be so low then slowly drop until the car stalls. In these cases, I have to rev the engine to keep it running. There will be days when it stops at every stop sign or stop light, and other days that it won't stall at all (though rare). Sometimes instead of just slowing until a stall, it will dance up and down from almost stalling to "normal" quickly. During this time the electrical is affected; as the RPMs drop, the lights dim, as the RPMs rise, the lights become brighter. This low RPM and stalling problem happens about 85% of the time I drive. About 15% of the time it's basically the opposite. My engine will run so hard that I can shift through gears and drive without using the gas pedal, and while in neutral the engine roars at about 4000 to 5000 RPMs. About a week ago my car developed a new problem with starting. I turn the key and it clicks a few times and stops. All the electric goes out and my clock displays CCCCCCCC (just a bunch of C's) momentarily and then goes out. At first I thought the battery was drained, but after a few tries, it started right up (with the usual several turn overs before starting). I've found that leaving the car alone for a while and then trying to restart works a good portion of the time. Another trick that sometimes works is pumping the clutch quickly several times.

    With this plethora of problems, I just don't know what could possibly be the problem. Does anyone have any ideas, or has anyone had similar experiences?

    Thanks, in advance!

  • perrymcperrymc Posts: 3
    First, no check engine lights or trouble codes, started having problem with the transmission being very very slow to shift to eventually slamming into gear after a delay (including reverse). I have seen this problem on other vehicles where the proper voltage was not being delivered to the tranny so I went straight to the battery posts and thoroughly cleaned them. Problem persisted and repeats because the battery is discharging. Problem goes away when the battery is fully charged. Charged battery and it tested okay at Autozone. Checkers tested the circuit in the car and received "battery not getting charge". Recleaned and inspected battery posts/cables. Discharge continues. Pulled alternator and Autozone and Checkers both tested "pass" all phases multiple times. The serpentine belt and tensioner appear in excellent condition. All connections at battery, starter and alternator appear in good condition. Battery cables appear in good condition. An Autozone tech mentioned that earlier Saturns had a harness problem with the connectors at the alternator but the '99 was not one of them. Of course, discharge accelerates when using the a/c, lights, radio ... I trickle charge every two days and stay symptom free. Has anyone had this problem and found a solution? I will entertain all suggestions at this point! Thanks to all :)
  • perrymcperrymc Posts: 3
    Yes, this year seems to be notorious for oil consumption ... no leaks ... just sucks it up! I have started using the high-mileage oil for older engines (its not the synthetic but it is significantly thicker - I think it contains Slick50) I also periodically us LUCAS oil treatment. All the auto stores carry them and they have cut my consumption about in half (still burns it tho!)

    You might scan Saturn Problems and Solutions to see just how common this is!
    Good luck. Sorry I couldn't figure out how to convert this to a link.
  • :D Well, I changed the throttle position sensor and my car STARTS! YAY!!! However it's still hesitant every once in a while when I start it. It's doing the hard rough idle still. Is this due to something else? :confuse:
  • I purchased a brand new 1996 Saturn SL1 automatic in Oct 1995 for going back and forth to high school. I serviced it regularly and have maintained it. Recently at 204,000 miles the a/c finally went out after stopping at a shadetree mechanic. The shadetree gave me an estimate to fix compressor and a/c system. Upset, I returned to the dealership, where everyone says not to take a vehicle after the age of 5 years. I had my a/c system replaced for nearly $400 less than shadetree. I am very pleased with the Saturn dealership experience even though I have to drive nearly 65 miles one way for service. Anyone that wants to keep their beloved Saturn alive should, in my experience, go to the dealership. The dealership experience, for the 11 years of maintenance so far, has averaged a cost of $89 per month. The Saturn company sends my car a birthday card every year. It may seem tacky, but my car isn't just a car, it's family. So, to close, I would recommend a well maintained Saturn for anyone looking for a cheap, dependable, and ding proof ride. I believe that almost any vehicle will last at the very least 200,000 miles given maintenance, nurturing, and the love that any proud parent would bestow upon their child. Drive safe and I may see you in my rear view mirror.
  • About three days ago I bought an automatic Saturn SC2 from a used car dealership for a little less than blue book value. When I took it for a test drive it drove ok, the car was a little jumpy around 30mph though. I assumed it was the transmission but took it lightly cause the car had 177,000 miles on it when I bought it and thought it was normal for an old car.
    The next day the "service engine soon" light came on. When I drove it a little less than 5 miles and after coming into a driveway to turn around it stalled, this happened when I stopped and then slowly pressed the gas.. then.. "cauplunk".

    Today I added transmission fluid because the level was below low. Thought that that would do the trick, but unfortunately not, and the "service engine soon" light is still on. The engine oil level seems fine. But I guess whoever had the car before me drove it with below normal trans fluid and mostlikly did permanent damage. :(

    I have noticed that it does this sometimes, after I have stopped (it runs smoothly in idle) then press the gas then it stalls. And while driving the car gets jumpy around 30mph (since its a 4 speed automatic its probably 2nd gear?)
    Keeping the car in "perf" or I guess "over drive" helps to slightly reduce these chances. It feels like it tries hard to switch into first and other certain gears (like a very poor stick shift driver) This is my first car that I've had for 3 days! and besides this problem I love the car it has good pick up and is quite sporty and fast considering its automatic.

    Does this sound like a major transmission problem? or minor?
    Has anyone else experienced this problem?
    Please e-mail me.. need any help/advice.
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    ...until you get it to a mechanic, because even if it is a 'minor' problem (doesn't sound too minor to me, sorry), it will no doubt be 'major' if you don't have it serviced. In any case, sorry to hear about your problem, hopefully it's not too major.

    Hate to ask, but how much is 'a little below blue book' for a ten year-old Saturn with 177k miles, anyway?
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    ...but just wondering, as a general rule, what to 'watch out for' with a '95 SL2. I wasn't really in the market for a car (I live in Chicago, don't really need one), but a co-worker was getting rid of hers, it seems to run and look fine (and it's not even an ugly color), despite it's 160k miles, and the price is a practially irresistible $400. Any advice?
  • kronykrony Posts: 110
    I have an '01 SL2 so it'd be a generation after yours but much the same design...

    I'd be most concerned about the transmission. I spent ~$800 to have my local Saturn dealer this Spring to attempt diagnosis on funky shifting to eventually replace a shift solenoid. I read up on it quite a bit and sounds like they are a bit finicky but like most sensitive to maintenance. make sure you have your tranny professionally flushed and the trans filter replaced. If you need repairs I'd recommend a local transmission shop who has no doubt had experience on Saturns. I thought my dealer would have more expertise but I was wrong, they were crooks.

    Beyond that I think they are fairly solid. Pretty good power on the twin cam engine, I had some engine vibration at idle the same time as the trans issues and a new upper motor mount (~$200) made it smooth as new.

    For $400 I think it's a deal...
  • kronykrony Posts: 110
    by the way...when I say trans I'm talkin' auto...
  • kronykrony Posts: 110
    Sounds similar to what I had this Spring...Saturn dealer started by replacing electrical stuff (battery and cable) and sent it home. Same exact thing when I pulled off the lot. I was suspicious from the start with the "have to start with elecrical first..." They then adjusted the input nut in the transmission and sent it home. Pulled off the lot and bad 2-3 shift was fixed but still slammed in reverse. Then they replaced a solenoid and was as good as ne (after $800).

    Needless to say I wasn't impressed with their diagnosis skills, especially with what's a common problem.
  • I've been in posession of a 94 SL2 for about six years now. We paid $2500 for it then and I have been nothing but happy ever since. As long as you take good care of it, it'll last you till past the 200,000 mile mark. Mine has.
  • gmb2428gmb2428 Posts: 1
    Well the dealer and a trans shop say I need a new valve body. The dealer wants 1100. The trans shop says about half that.

    My question is how hard is it to swap this part out. I see u just pull the battery and tray, then take out a lot of bolts to the pan on top, so once u get in there is this something u just unbolt and replace and ur done...or is there a lot more to it???
  • kronykrony Posts: 110
    Can't say but doing searches on the net for my tranny problems you may find repair info. Not sure if a Haynes manual would have it in there...
  • lmljjllmljjl Posts: 1
    I have a 97 SL2 that has a few problems. The check engine light comes on periodically but doesn't change the way the car is runs. The cars starts great when the engine is cold. After running the engine and gets warm and shut the engine off, I have a hard time re starting the car. It cranks fine but seems to have a problem possibly with fuel getting to the engine. I was hoping that someone else has experienced this problem and could direct me to the problem.
  • bambiebambie Posts: 12
    I have a 97 SC1 with similar problem.When I turn the key to restart a warm engine ,I have to wait 1 or 2 seconds for the fuel guage needle to return from emty to it,s original position.At the same time,I here the fuel pump bringing the fuel pressure back up,then it starts fine.In some other types of cars,the fuel in fuel filter,vapourizes because it,s hot.May need new filter.
  • My 96 Saturn s2 has big-time electrical problems. The door locks are irratic and I have to manually lock and unlock them -- even then they will sometimes unlock themselves and it's a real hassle. Also the audio system says "loc" on the lcd dial and nothing works. I could sure use some advice on this.
  • Need diagnostic assistance. My daughters 2001 SL2 was purchased new and has always been on synthetic oil. It has 109,000 miles on it and is loosing oil. I can find it just inside the tail pipe with a rag but its not smoking or blowing smoke at start-up. I tested the compression per OEM maintenance manuals (I work on everything I own) and it was 105 to 110 at all four cylinders. The manuals stated for oil consumption replace PCV valve, check compression... did both. I recently pulled the head and had it rebuilt, also replaced timing gears, chain, tensioner, guides the works while in the motor. I put it all back together thinking the valve guides were leaking oil and I was done.....wrong. Oil consumption has not slowed down and I still have no smoke indicator from the tail pipe.
    I am lost and in need of advice. HELP!
  • my 1992 Saturn SL1 started loseing electrical power, usally when i stepped on the brake pedal. now the car wouldn't start , its a standard 5 speed so i push started it it ran fine , after bringing it back home it would not start again . i had no electrical power to anything, if i put the key into the ignition then pulled it back out there was a clicking noise coming from under the console, after putting the key in and out a few times the clicking quit and the car started fine. when i hear the clicking noise i have no electrical power to anything , but when it quits clicking i have electrical power to everything and car starts fine. any ideals? is there some kind of a relay switch under the console that would rob my electrical power to everything?
  • The best way to do this is to have someone at bestbuy or something like that do it for you. If you are dead-set on doing it yourself buy a book on your car. I have an SL1 so what it can't be much different. But what there should be a mounting adapter to fit into the slot of the old stereo if the new stereo is too small. But, If it is too big there may be some removals needed.
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